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'Heavy Rain' was turned down by Microsoft over child kidnapping story

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Heavy Rain was turned down by Microsoft due to its child kidnapping story, it has been revealed.

Speaking at this year's BAFTA annual games lecture, Quantic Dream's head of development David Cage said the publisher was "scared" of the controversy it could cause.

Screenshot of the 'Heavy Rain' game for PS2

© Sony

Heavy Rain was pitched and rejected by Microsoft before becoming a PS3 exclusive.



"We were pitching Heavy Rain to different publishers, including Sony, and we went to Microsoft," he told attendees including Digital Spy.

"We had a very long talk and they loved Fahrenheit, and they really wanted to do something with us.

"They got scared by the fact that Heavy Rain was about kids being kidnapped, and they said, 'This is an issue, we want to change it'. Well, we could have kidnapped cats, it would be a different experience!

"For me, that was a very interesting signal. It was like, you know what, I don't think we can work together, because you don't understand what I'm to achieve here.

Heavy Rain

© Sony

Heavy Rain was released in early 2010.



"They were scared of the scandal and scared of what people may write and what people may think. 'Oh, this is a developer and the publisher making games about a child getting kidnapped'.

"When you play Heavy Rain, I don't think this is what the game is about. Microsoft is a great company; I'm not complaining or criticising. I'm just saying that there was some resistance at the time that was not in sync with what we wanted to achieve."

Cage continued: "We had this conversation with Sony very honestly saying, 'Okay, there is a reason here'. But I think they understand the upside of what we were doing.

"This could be incredibly emotional, if done with taste and if there's nothing shocking for the sake of shocking. There should be a strong emotional experience, but it shouldn't be vulgar, it shouldn't be about blood and whatever, it should be about love.

"We could understand each other, and this is how Heavy Rain happened."
David Cage previously said that sequels kill off creativity and innovation.

Shenmue creator Yu Suzuki joined Heavy Rain director David Cage and Republique director Ryan Payton to talk about storytelling in games in a video earlier this year.

Quantic Dream's next title, Beyond: Two Souls, stars Ellen Page and Willem Dafoe, in a story that explores Page's character's ability to communicate with a spirit from a young age.

Like Heavy Rain, the game's story will be shaped by the choices that players make.

> 'Beyond: Two Souls' preview: Quantic Dream's new interactive drama

Watch a trailer for Beyond: Two Souls below:

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